WHEREAS Part 10, Division 8 provides municipalities with the authority to collect tax arrears that relate to property taxes, local improvement taxes or special taxes as detailed under Section 382 of the Municipal Government Act (MGA); and
WHEREAS Alberta municipalities rely on property tax revenue to financially support the purposes of a municipality as defined in Part 1 Section 3 (a) (b) and (c) of the MGA; and
WHEREAS there are municipalities, towns and villages that are experiencing property tax arrears; and
WHEREAS the length of time required to enforce the tax recovery provisions of Part 10, Division 8 place excessive strain on the cash flows of municipalities, towns and villages;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Alberta Association of Municipal Districts and Counties recommend to the Government of Alberta to amend Section 412(1)(a) of the Municipal Government Act (MGA) to exclude “for more than one year” thereby enabling municipalities to initiate the tax recovery process one year after the date the tax is imposed rather than of two years as legislation now provides.
Over the last several years, property tax arrears due to the Municipality of Crowsnest Pass have been cumulating with the Director of Finance confirming that there is $867,226.91 of property tax arrears due to the Municipality at December 31, 2011. The tax recovery process, as it exists, enables property owners to continue to maintain taxes in arrears for a continuous two year period after the date imposed before the property can be added to the tax arrears list. The current tax recovery process is a three year collection process that does not provide municipalities with a timely opportunity to recover uncollectible tax arrears thereby impacting cash flow required for operations and meeting tax requisitions on behalf of the Government of Alberta.
The AAMDC has no active resolutions directly related to this issue.